All the WAYS to Say “LAZY” in Italian: Let’s Learn How to Speak like a Native!

In the Italian language, the expression “essere pigro” is the first one that comes to mind to denote laziness. Nevertheless, there are several alternatives to it that I will show you in this article. Are you ready to identify them together?

10 DIFFERENT ways to say “Essere Pigro”

Let’s have a look together at how to replace in the best way as possible the expression “Essere Pigro” in Italian:


It is just a neutral alternative to “pigro”: it denotes a person who does not really want to do something.

For example:

Questa sera non ho molta voglia di uscire perché mi sento poco attivo.

(Tonight I don’t really want to go out because I don’t feel very active.)


This expression is a very funny idiomatic one, which indicates a person who loves to live comfortably, in total laziness.

The Italian expression “essere un pantofolaio” comes from the Italian word “pantofole“, that is, the typical footwear worn at home, the slippers, and it is used here in order to emphasize that that person is someone who is used to wearing slippers all the time.

For example:

Dopo aver lavorato tutta la settimana, durante il fine settimana divento un pantofolaio.

(After having worked all week long, on the weekends I become a couch potato.)


This expression is also pretty funny and denotes whoever avoids doing anything that requires a little effort.

The Italian word “scansafatiche” is in fact a compound word, formed by the verb “scansare” + fatiche. Scansare means “to avoid, to dodge”. Therefore, if you avoid fatigue, it means you dodge work and tiring things.

For example:

Mario è uno scansafatiche e non perde l’occasione per fuggire via quando bisogna lavorare!

(Mario is a lazybones and does not miss any opportunity to run away when there is work to do.)


A lazy person can also be defined as “poco volenterosa”. This adjective comes from the verb “volere“, which therefore indicates a willingness to do, to complete, for example, a job or a task.

On the contrary, those who are unwilling do not have this desire.

Another way to say so could be “essere svogliato”.

For example:

I lavoratori non volenterosi non verranno premiati.

(The unwilling workers will not be rewarded.)


One more enjoyable expression.

Fannullone” in Italian is formed by the verb “fare” and the noun “nulla”, which means that that person doesn’t do anything and has no desire to do anything.

For example:

Marco non aiuta mai nei lavori domestici, è proprio un grande fannullone!

(Marco never helps out with housework, he is such a loafer!)


We all know that when you have the right motivation, you are able to do anything, even complete the most difficult tasks. 

But what happens when you do not have the motivation? Well… you become lazy, you do not want to act anymore.

It is from here that the meaning of these two forms results: they indicate the lack of motivation, which encourages a person not to have any precise goals and not to carry out their activities to the fullest. 

For example:

Non mi sento abbastanza motivato per portare a termine questo progetto.

(I don’t feel motivated enough to complete this project.)


Ozio is a synonym of inertia, inactivity, laziness. This is where the adjective “ozioso” comes from, meaning a person who abstains from all activities and lives in a constant resting state.

For example:

Francesco è un ragazzo ozioso, passerebbe le sue giornate sempre sul divano.

(Francesco is an idle boy, he would spend his days always on the couch.)


An apathetic person is someone who is totally indifferent to his/her surroundings: someone not interested in establishing social relations with other people, not motivated in the practice of any work or activity and unable to enjoy life.

Its meaning is therefore a little broader than simple laziness, but somehow it includes it among other things.

So if you see someone playing video games and yelling, you might call him a “fannullone” or a “pantofolaio”, because he doesn’t work and does nothing except sitting and watching a screen, but still you couldn’t call him “apatico”, because at least he enjoys the video game and feels some kind of emotions.

On the contrary, someone who sits on the couch all day without talking and doing anything else, could definitely be a “fannullone” or a “pantofolaio”, but certainly also an “apatico”.

For example:

Ieri non avevo nessuna voglia di uscire con gli amici, mi sentivo completamente apatico.

(Yesterday I had no desire to go out with my friends, I felt completely apathetic.)


The Italian verb “poltrire” means “to spend all your time in an armchair”, in short, to do nothing, to lounge in English. It comes from the armchair, which is called “poltrona” in Italian.

Other ways to express this same meaning are “essere impoltronito” or “essere un poltrone”.

If you know the reason why that person is lazy, you could also use the verb “impoltronire”: “la causa” impoltronisce “qualcuno” (“the reason” idles “someone”.)

For example:

La vita comoda l’ha impoltronito.

(A comfortable life made him lazy.)

Lui è impoltronito a causa della vita comoda.

(He is lazy because of his easy life.)

Grazie alla sua vita comoda, se ne sta a poltrire tutto il giorno.

(Thanks to his comfortable life, he gets to lounge all day long.)


Hibernation, “letargo” in Italian, is that state of torpor similar to deep sleep, typical of some animals especially during the winter, in order to better adapt and reactivate only in the summer.

For humans, the expression “andare in letargo” (or “essere in letargo”) can be used to indicate that feeling of drowsiness and general laziness that prevents you from carrying out any action.

For example:

Il tuo non è sonno… è proprio voglia di andare in letargo!

(Yours is not just sleepiness…you truly want to hibernate!)

Now that you know all the possible alternatives to “pigro/a”, all you have to do is learn all the Italian ways to say “bellissimo/a”. Moreover, we strongly recommend you take a look at our latest book: Parolacce… e come evitarle! (you won’t regret it: it is one of a kind!).

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